By COLlive reporter
Midwood is the latest neighborhood to fall under the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s growing portfolio known as the Neighborhood Entrepreneurship Program.
One initiative is a map for shoppers highlighting stores throughout Midwood. The shop local campaign is part of the newly-created “I Invest” Program, and will serve as a catalyst for economic development throughout the neighborhood.
Another is a 3-month street cleaning pilot program aimed at cleaning up Midwood and making it a destination for shoppers from across Brooklyn and New York. It is sponsored by Investors Bank with additional support from TD Bank.
The pilot program calls for cleaning areas near street corner garbage cans; weekly Monday clean-ups along major streets; and clearing of debris from under elevated subway tracks on Avenue M and East 15 Street, as well as Avenue J and East 16 Street.
Carlo A. Scissura, President & CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, noted that “all the borough’s neighborhoods are created equal. Clean streets are a catalyst for small business growth, ensuring that residents and visitors alike make walking these streets an enjoyable experience. Therefore, it is imperative that everyone work together to ensure the streets are clean and safe.”
Scissura unveiled the program at a reception that included local business owners and elected officials such as Councilman David Greenfield and the Chamber’s Project Manager for Economic Development Avi Leshes, a resident of Crown Heights.
Taking an interest in helping make Midwood a cleaner and more friendly place to conduct business are also a few Lubavitchers who own and operate businesses in the neighborhood.
They include Zalman Wuensch of Wolf and Lamb, Pinny Teller of Legaacy, Schneur Harel of Sushi Tokyo, Shloimy Eichler of Eichler’s Judaica and others.
A hotline will also be created to allow merchants to call if they see debris and wish to have clean-up crews dispatched to the area.
The response comes in the wake of a recent report released by the Mayor’s Office of Operations showing that Community Board 12 streets, which encompass the areas of Midwood, Borough Park and Kensington, were listed as only 82.8% acceptable. By comparison, many other Brooklyn neighborhoods, for example, scored in the high 90s.
The Chamber is active in nine areas: 13th Avenue in Dyker Heights, Fourth Avenue in Park Slope/Sunset Park, Seventh Avenue in Park Slope, South Williamsburg, Red Hook, Sheepshead Bay and North Crown Heights.
The Jewish area of Crown Heights, which does not have an active merchant association, can use a clean up as well.
The neighborhood’s streets have been ranked among the dirtiest in Brooklyn, according the mayor’s office recent ratings. The scores are based on street and sidewalk cleanliness throughout the entire city.